Salem, Ore. – Donations to the Oregon Cultural Trust surpassed $5.55 million in 2021, a 6.7 percent increase over 2020’s record-setting results of $5.2 million. The funds will support grant awards to cultural organizations across the state this summer and continue to build the Cultural Trust’s permanent fund, now valued at more than $31 million.
“After an extraordinary increase of 13 percent in 2020, we knew that maintaining that growth would be an achievement,” said Cultural Trust Board Chair Niki Price. “To build on it so significantly demonstrates Oregonians’ continued commitment to helping our cultural community recover from losses suffered during the pandemic and rebuild.”
“A key campaign strategy for the last couple of years has been virtual presentations about how the cultural tax credit works,” said Cultural Trust Executive Director Brian Rogers. “Once cultural donors realize that a matching gift to the Trust will come back to them as a dollar-for-dollar state tax credit, they tend to step up. Especially when they know they will be strengthening the more than 1,500 cultural organizations we support across the state. It becomes a win win.”
The $5.55 million fundraising total includes 10,608 donations and 1,630 new donors. It also includes a record $608,270.75 raised through an ongoing partnership with the Willamette Week Give!Guide.
“Our partnership with Give!Guide continues to be a cornerstone of our campaign,” said Rogers. “It is a great way for people to learn about the Cultural Trust and the tax credit, bringing in 2,394 donations this year alone.”
More than half of the money raised will be distributed directly to Oregon’s nonprofit cultural community this summer; the remainder will grow the Cultural Trust permanent fund. Cultural Trust grants are distributed through five Statewide Cultural Partners – Oregon Arts Commission, Oregon Heritage, Oregon Historical Society, Oregon Humanities and the Oregon State Office of Historic Preservation – as well as to 45 County/Tribal Cultural Coalitions, who regrant the funds in their communities, and directly to cultural nonprofits via Cultural Development Grants.
The 90 projects supported by Cultural Development Grants in FY2022 include:
- Access to culturally relevant celebrations and events involving traditional art, music and dance for Latinx families and the greater community by Comunidad y Herencia Cultural in Springfield;
- An exhibit at the Favell Museum in Klamath Falls by Klamath Modoc artist Ka’ila Farrell-Smith — her first for her Native community. Her art explores the space between the Indigenous & western paradigms;
- Indexing, cross-referencing, digitization and expanded access to the Harney County Library oral history collection for the community, researchers and genealogists by the Harney County Library Foundation in Burns;
- Access to robust, community-led art making and exhibition opportunities for BIPOC artists, cultural workers and residents in East Portland’s Jade District by the Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon in Portland;
- Construction of the Arrival Plaza at Astoria Nordic Heritage Park, a cultural attraction for North Coast residents and visitors by the Astoria Scandinavian Heritage Association;
- The installation of a lift for better accessibility to the landmark Carnegie Library building in La Grande by Eastern Oregon Regional Arts Council, Inc.;
- Funding the Portland Chinatown History Foundation’s first paid executive director to further develop, sustain, strengthen and grow operations, programs and collaborations;
- Expanded access to the performing arts of India through a hybrid model of delivering the in-home experience of live concerts and master classes via social media by Rasika Society for Arts of India in Hillsboro; and
- The preservation of Historic Community Hall by strengthening wall supports and replacing damaged roof trusses by the Willamette Community and Grange Hall Historic Building Foundation in Corvallis.
For a full list of Cultural Trust grant projects, including links to Cultural County Coalitions and several hundred county projects they are funding this year, visit www.culturaltrust.org.
The exclusive contracted partner for the Cultural Trust’s 2021 fundraising campaign was Bell+Funk of Eugene.
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The Oregon Cultural Trust was established by the Oregon Legislature in 2001 as a unique means to reward Oregonians who invest in culture. Oregonians who donate to a cultural nonprofit and then make a matching gift to the Cultural Trust receive a 100% state tax credit for their gift to the Trust.